New Report: Wearable Healthcare Technology Market Shooting Up to USD 41 Billion by 2020
Wearable devices, smart algorithms and the existence of huge, easily accessible health databases are disrupting the health industry. Today, the global size of such smart wearable devices is USD 2 billion. By the year 2020 this market is estimated to reach USD 41 billion. Today, we are at the mere beginning of this deep transformation of the healthcare sector. Future medical care will be highly personalized and new players will change industry dynamics.
Diabetes, sleep disorders, obesity and cardiovascular diseases are the biggest growth segments in this market. The key drivers of this growth include enormous advances in sensor technologies, ubiquitous mobile Internet, and strongly growing populations with chronic diseases. The financial pressures on healthcare systems provide fertile soil for innovative solutions.
“Today, we are at the mere beginning of this deep transformation of the healthcare sector. New technologies are being developed by innovative medtech companies, pharma, mobile phone manufacturers, software companies, start-ups and research organizations around the world,” says Pascal Koenig, Research Director at Soreon. “The penetration of smart wearable healthcare technology will take years, even decades in some cases. However, the combination of enormous clinical benefits with the potential for cost savings will result in a strongly growing market.”
Top 3 companies developing the most disruptive wearable healthcare technology
Among more than 250 products and companies, Soreon Research has selected the 30 that will be most disruptive. The selection was based on nine criteria in the areas of innovation, market potential and execution power. Here are the Top 3:
Jawbone/Up24 (16/20 points): a user-friendly and comfortable-to-wear tracker for self-monitoring of physical activity and sleep. With its large number of clients, a multi-billion US dollar valuation and the acquisition of BodyMedia, Jawbone is well positioned to play a key role in the area of smart wearables.
Abbott Laboratories/FreeStyle Libre Flash (16/20 points): a cutting edge continuous glucose monitoring system conveniently worn for up to two weeks via an adhesive sensor. Continuous glucose monitoring helps diabetes patients observe important trends in their glucose levels rather than just infrequent snapshot insights.
Google/Smart Contact Lenses Project (15/20 points): Google’s Smart Contact Lenses Project carried out in cooperation with Novartis is a visionary but credible approach to continuously measuring glucose levels. The contact lenses, which non-invasively read glucose levels from tear fluid, could prevent hypo- and hyperglycemic events by taking around-the-clock measurements.
The top 30 providers of smart wearables come from 10 different countries. 15 of the top 30 companies are headquartered in the United States, the global center of innovation for smart healthcare wearables. Within the United States, about half of these companies are based in the Silicon Valley. Switzerland is another center of this emerging industry, with six of the analyzed companies having their headquarters there.
No time to lose for the healthcare industry
“The focus of healthcare will shift from treatment to prevention. Future medical care will be highly personalized and new players will change industry dynamics,” emphasizes Pascal Koenig. “Providers of wearable technologies and software companies are playing an increasing role in the medical field, thereby challenging the established relationship among patients, doctors and hospitals.”
According to Soreon Research, wearable healthcare technology will be an important growth driver for companies in this sector. There is no time to lose to take advantage of this massive opportunity. Tech behemoths like Apple and Samsung, as well as hundreds of nimble start-ups, are gearing up their efforts in smart wearable healthcare and Soreon Research stresses that this opportunity must be high on the agenda of every healthcare and medtech executive. Bystanders and laggards will be steamrollered by a wave of technological innovation as never witnessed before.
As healthcare systems are experiencing heavy cost pressures, the report recommends building solutions that not only offer clinical improvements, but also cost reductions. This will help businesses to overcome hurdles for faster adoption of innovations within the sector. Soreon also stresses the importance of “ease of use” as too much complexity may be the single most important reason for the failure of smart wearable projects.
About the Report
For the report “Smart Wearable Healthcare 2014," Soreon Research analyzed more than 250 development projects and products in the area of smart wearable healthcare worldwide. The analysts selected leading companies and projects in the fields that they projected would be the key markets in 2020 for smart wearable devices: diabetes, sleep disorders, obesity, cardiovascular diseases, in-hospital monitoring, geriatry/PERS, asthma, Alzheimer’s and epilepsy. Based on nine criteria in three main categories, a total of 30 companies were selected as the ones to provide solutions with the most disruptive potential.
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